In Prospect‘s lead opinion piece this month, Trevor Phillips—chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission and one of Britain’s foremost black political figures—explains why he believes Barack Obama’s emergence as a credible US presidential candidate has actually put back the arrival of a post-racial America.
Obama is, Phillips explains, both a charismatic and a ruthless figure, and one “whose African ancestors never endured transatlantic slavery.” Unlike “challengers,” such as Malcolm X, Obama is a “bargainer” who has tacitly agreed not use America’s history of white racism as a political weapon, and who in return expects his own race not…
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